The eight signs your friend fancies your husband... and what to do (2024)

When it comes to affairs, men can be lazy and predictable, so often transferring their affections to someone close at hand; if it's not the PA or the nanny, it could be their wife's best friend.

Why go hunting far and wide when there's a woman regularly popping in and out of your life who is a bit like your wife, but different?

And this vulnerability is exactly why you should be alert for any signs your best friend might have designs on your man — and be prepared to nip any flirtation in the bud.

As a psychotherapist and relationship counsellor, I know you absolutely need to be able to trust your best friend.

But if you don't want to risk losing your partner to the person whose shoulder you'd have sobbed on, you need to be on your guard for the sometimes surprising signs that your friend is getting closer to him than she should...

When it comes to affairs, men can be lazy and predictable, so often transferring their affections to someone close at hand such as their wife's best friend

She takes his side

If you confide in this friend about your husband, how does she respond? Can you speak freely without feeling attacked in return? If she automatically takes his side over yours, it might signal her wavering loyalty. Watch out if she refuses to consider that your husband could be anything but angelic or makes you feel ungrateful if you complain about him.

She's all dressed up

When you meet for a relaxed get-together and she appears in full battle dress — lips, nails, cleavage, the lot — consider this to be highly suspicious. The move is so much more sinister if she knows you don't feel good about yourself or your appearance.

She talks about sex

Be alert for jokey sexual banter and double entendre. If she drunkenly boasts how much she enjoys oral sex she might be lying, but she could still be impressing and intriguing your man — particularly if your marital bed has become a little unadventurous. Her declarations could heighten expectation, calling him to question his relationship with you.

She offers bad advice

If your normally supportive friend starts giving questionable advice ('Ignore him — get that puppy!', 'Just book that holiday, he'll come around to the idea'), it could be a sign she is stirring your marital pot in order to make her path easier.

Watch out for a friend who offers to take on your husband as a project, particularly in the wake of some sort of crisis

She undermines you

Possibly the most toxic sign is if she undermines you when he's around. Don't dismiss those small jibes, delivered as teasing, that are designed to make you look a little stupid.

If she blurts out stories you told her in confidence (perhaps moaning about his mother, his laziness or his grubby habits) she may be trying to make herself look better in front of him.

She's concerned about his welfare

Watch out for a friend who offers to take on your husband as a project, particularly in the wake of some sort of crisis. Crisis — whether that's feeling unfit, sad, lost or bereft — can swiftly lead to connection... with someone other than you.

A client of mine told me she was really grateful when her best friend offered to encourage her husband to start jogging when he was struggling to lose weight. The two of them bonded over their runs — and ended up leaving both their spouses to be together.

She pretends to hate him

Look out for dramatic swings in behaviour. One minute she's unfriendly towards your husband, perhaps belittling him; the next she's love-bombing him, going all sparkly-eyed when he's around. This is toxic if she pushes him towards bad behaviour, especially if it puts you in the unenviable position of being the killjoy.

Read More BRYONY GORDON: I'm in a 'mixed-weight' couple and my husband still ravishes me

She mirrors his body language

Laughing at his corny jokes, squeezing his biceps or sidling up to him at social occasions can all be pretty harmless examples of social flirting, but you'll need to be eagle-eyed to spot more sinister moves.

Unconsciously mirroring his body language is bonding on a subliminal level.

If sexual energies are heightened between them look out for 'auto-erotic touching' — touching lips, necks or arms — or 'preening' to make sure they look their best.

...and what to do if you suspect her?

Keep things in proportion. Is she girly and giggly around every guy? Could you be reading too much into her affections for your husband?

Sometimes the revelation that your best friend goes a little twinkly around your man can be a positive boost to your relationship, which can help recalibrate your perspective.

Pay attention if you feel insecure. Your fears might be unfounded, but it's worth exploring why you feel worried. Are you jealous of her? If you cherish your friendship, it's important to try to find a way through. Maybe hers was just a passing crush because you're so lucky to have married a lovely man.

However, if their bonding leads to bad behaviour, you do need to call it out. Bringing something almost subliminal out into the open could be all that is needed to put a halt on her unwelcome behaviour.

Your best approach is a gentle one; tell morality tales about someone else in a similar situation and see how she responds. If that doesn't work, try not to be accusatory. Say something like: 'I've just got the sense that you're crushing on my man?'

Be honest with your husband, too. Take him aside and describe the signs you've noticed, asking him to please be respectful with your concerns.

As told to Louise Atkinson.

The eight signs your friend fancies your husband... and what to do (2024)
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